“I started a book once…”
Anyone can start something, but finishing it is another story. I am in the thick of writing the longest book of my career. It may also be the most important.
The outline alone was 7 pages long. The longer an outline, the more content a writer can work with.
I used to fly free and just write a story with the idea in my head. The longer I did that the more I realized it leaves a writer open for plot holes and loss of control. It may work for some authors, but anyone who struggles to get to “The End,” should try outlining.
To be fair, this is a massive nonfiction novel on spirituality in the modern world. I’m a Pagan; it’s a subject I just can’t avoid writing about because so many people message me for guidance or understanding.
I have a smaller nonfiction memoir about my journey releasing early next year, but that title is more personal and written in a memoir style. It is a short 150 page book.
By contrast I wanted the next project to be a more technical, detailed account of what one must do to get started, cultivate personal energies, and master a deeper connection to themselves and the world around them. This giant project is already 250 pages and I have plenty more to cover.
In order to stay on point, keep the pages turning, and get this book finished I knew I had to create a detailed outline. It has gotten me this far. Each chapter is 10,000+ words and I’m finishing one a week.
That kind of pacing might not be realistic for other writers. How one approaches their writing is how their work will come through. Slow and steady still gets a story finished even if it’s not as soon as others, but if deadlines are involved splitting up time with a concise schedule is necessary. I’m the first person who raves about changing processes. No routine I develop ever sticks, but there is a pattern that develops with each project.
Getting into that cycle of setting up a slight practice, following it, and carrying through doesn’t have to be super organized. My desk is covered in paper, random pens, and lip glosses. I don’t write at exactly the same time everyday. However your set up manifests, just making sure to power through and record a defined idea gets the job done.
I don’t do #NaNoMo because I write for a living. My work will get done whether I pledge to do it or not. I can’t avoid it. But for anyone utilizing this helpful boost, write on!